When I first moved to San Diego, 5 short years ago I learned that this charming little seaside town was crawling with Cougars. I know what you’re thinking, and I thought the same thing. Cougars in San Diego? Surely these people have been in the sun to long.
I had only just moved here from Arizona and didn’t want to cause problems. So I went along with it and pretended that Del Mar was crawling with Cougars. I’d even make comments like “Oh Honey, I saw a cougar crossing the PCH today” or “I nearly escaped a cougar attack today.” Why not just play along and try to fit in.
Then it happened. I saw my first Cougar.
After enjoying an evening at the Del Mar Track with friends, we decided to walk to one of the local bars. As we were crossing the parking lot is when I first heard the cries. “Watch out! Here comes a pack of cougars! To your right dude! Shit they’ve seen us!”
My heart started racing, what was I going to do. I started looking for somewhere to run, hide, or maybe I should just play dead. I quickly looked to my right, nothing. Well, maybe my then future husband is an idiot and doesn’t know left from right. I looked to the left, nothing.
There was nothing in either direction, except for a group of Ladies dressed for a night out in Del Mar. Did I have time to yell at them to run? Should I try and help them? I closed my eye and braced for the attack. Nothing.
Crap, these guys really are crazy! They’re seeing imaginary animals. I just picked up and moved my whole life to San Diego to marry a crazy person.
After a few moments, I came to realize that my “very sweet” boyfriend was calling these Ladies COUGARS! What? Really? Cougars? I didn’t know whether to be relieved or offended.
From that night on, I’ve been fascinated with learning more about these creatures. What exactly makes on a Cougar? At what age? Do they have to single? Do you have to dress a certain way?
Cougars play such a strong role in Del Mar Track Season. They even have a Miss Cougar Contest every year at the track! I don’t cover Cougars in my guide to the track but I probably should.
So you tell me. What is a Cougar? Do I want to be a Cougar? Do I want people to at least think I could be a Cougar?